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News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
A Major Role in Back Pain: The Multifidus
Back pain affects roughly 80 percent of the population at one time or another and is one of the leading causes of doctor visits.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
June, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 06
Research in Water and Fascia
Micro-tornadoes, hydrogenated diamonds & nanocrystals
By Leon Chaitow, ND, DO
Several years ago, I wrote a series of articles for Massage Today on the topic of the then-recent and exciting research into fascia.1 As the Second International Fascia Research Congress approaches (Oct. 27 - Oct. 30, 2009) at the Vrije Universiteit or "Free University" of Amsterdam (http://www.fasciacongress.org/2009), it seems appropriate to return to some of the fascinating advances touched on in my earlier articles along with a few new exciting pieces of research - all of which reflect directly on the work of manual therapists.
Some of the key fascia-related topics covered in those earlier articles were:
In a 2005 study, German researchers, Schleip, et al,6 noted their discoveries on fascia: "The ability of fascia to contract is further demonstrated by the widespread existence of pathological fascial contractures. Probably, the most well-known example is Dupuytren disease (palmar fibromatosis), which is known to be mediated by the proliferation and contractile activity of myofibroblasts. Lesser known is the existence of similar contractures in other fascial tissues which are also driven by contractile myofibroblasts, e.g. plantar fibromatosis, Peyronies disease (induratio penis plastica), club foot, or - much more commonly - in the frozen shoulder with its documented connective tissue contractures. Given the widespread existence of such strong pathological chronic contractures, it seems likely that minor degrees of fascial contractures might exist among normal, healthy people and have some influence on biomechanical behavior."
Anyone using myofascial release approaches, or acupuncture, should be able to appreciate the potential therapeutic implications of these discoveries.
Amazing Crystalline Properties
And recently, even more evidence has emerged of the mysteries of fascia. For example, the behavior of water that interacts with protein in the human body is becoming clearer. In an article "Water is 'Designer Fluid' that Helps Proteins Change Shape, Scientists Say," Dr. Martin Gruebele, University of Illinois, explains: "Water in our bodies has different physical properties from ordinary bulk water, because of the presence of proteins and other biomolecules. Proteins change the properties of water to perform particular tasks in different parts of our cells. Water can be viewed as a 'designer fluid' in living cells." To read the full article go to: http://news.biocompare.com/newsstory.asp?id=239323.
Other research shows that interfascial water plays a key part in what is termed "protein folding," the process necessary for cells to form their characteristic shapes - and that nanocrystals are a part of this process - and that these are influenced by light. According to Sommer, et al7: "In the course of a systematic exploration of interfacial water layers on solids we discovered microtornadoes, found a complementary explanation to the surface conductivity on hydrogenated diamond, and arrived at a practical method to repair elastin degeneration, using light."
The leading researcher in this field, Dr. Gerald Pollack, University of Washington professor of bioengineering, has shown that water can at times demonstrate a tendency to behave in a crystalline manner. He has discussed interfacial water in living cells known as vicinal water. Interfacial water exhibits structural organizations that differ from what is termed "bulk" water. This "vicinal" water seems to be influenced by structural properties that make up the cell. An example of this, and in relation to the water in a temperomandibular joint, Pollack states8: "The combined data from three different methods lead to the conclusion that all or almost all of the water in the intact disc is bound water and does not have properties consistent with free or bulk water."
For fascinating insight into water research, download the free video of Dr. Pollack's recent address at the University of Washington: http://www.uwtv.org/programs/displayevent.aspx?rID=22222.
Fascia, Water and Manual Therapy
Several years ago, Klingler, et al9 showed that the water content of fascia partially determines its stiffness, and that stretching, or compression, of fascia (as occurs during almost all manual therapies), causes water to be extruded (like a sponge) - making the tissues more pliable and supple. After a while, the water is taken up again and stiffness returns, but in the meantime structures have been mobilised and stretched more effectively and comfortably, than if they were still densely packed with water.
Klingler, et al measured wet and dry fresh human fascia, and found that during an isometric stretch, water is extruded, refilling during a subsequent rest period. As water extrudes during stretching, temporary relaxation occurs in the longitudinal arrangement of the collagen fibers. If the strain is moderate, and there are no micro-injuries, water soaks back into the tissue until it swells, becoming stiffer than before.
All this suggests that much manual therapy and the tissue responses experienced, may relate to sponge-like squeezing and refilling effects in the semi-liquid ground substance, with its water-binding glycosaminoglycans and proteoglycans. Muscle energy technique, like contractions and stretches, almost certainly have similar effects on the water content of connective tissue, as do myofascial release methods, and the multiple force-loading elements of massage.
The speed with which research is uncovering the secrets of fascia is mind-boggling, and I hope to see you in Amsterdam to discover even more!
Click here for more information about Leon Chaitow, ND, DO.
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